FEATURE: Cooking Local Marilyn Monroe's Secret Stuffing

November 19, 2010

Who knew she could cook? A hand-written recipe suggests the actress had a deft touch in the kitchen.

It is likely she cooked this recipe for her then-husband Joe DiMaggio.


Monroe's recipe was

published in "Fragments" (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux), a collection of snippets and letters. The

original didn't include specific amounts for all ingredients, so her stuffing has been adapted several ways. Here

are two versions of her amazing French-style stuffing:


Marilyn Monroe's French Stuffing


(from http://frenchfood.about.com/od/sidedishes/r/Marilyns-Stuffing-Recipe.htm)



    * 6 ounces pain au levian (sourdough)

/>    * 1/4 pound chicken livers
    * 1/4 pound ground sirloin

/>    * 1 cup mirepoix
    * 2 bay leaves
    * 1 cup

chopped, fresh parsley
    * 1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
    * 1/2 cup

raisins (substitute any dried fruits)
    * 1/2 cup grated Parmesan

2/3 cup cooked chestnuts, chopped
    * 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
    * 1

teaspoon ground black pepper
    * 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
    * 1

teaspoon dried sage
    * 1 teaspoon dried thyme
    * 1/4 teaspoon

    * 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg


How to

make 1950's-style French stuffing:

Soak the pain au levian in water for 15 minutes. Drain the bread in

a colander for 5 minutes and squeeze it dry. Pull it apart into small pieces.

While the bread is

soaking and draining, prepare the livers and ground beef. Boil the livers for 8 to 10 minutes, until they are

done. Finely chop the cooked livers. Brown the ground beef in a large skillet, and transfer the meat to a bowl.

Sauté the mirepoix and bay leaves in the remaining beef fat for 5 minutes. Discard the bay leaves

and stir together the shredded bread, cooked livers, browned beef, sautéed mirepoix, parsley, eggs,

raisins, cheese, chestnuts, salt, pepper, and dried herbs.

Marilyn's stuffing recipe makes

approximately 10 cups.


Marilyn Monroe's French Stuffing 2






Adapted from “Fragments” by Marilyn Monroe (Farrar, Straus & Giroux; $30)

Time: 2 hours

No garlic

A 10-ounce loaf sourdough bread

1/2 pound chicken

or turkey livers or hearts

1/2 pound ground round or other beef

1 tablespoon cooking oil

4 stalks celery, chopped

1 large onion, chopped

2 cups chopped curly parsley

2 eggs, hard boiled, chopped

1 1/2 cups raisins

1 cup grated Parmesan


1/4 cups chopped walnuts, pine nuts or roasted chestnuts, or a combination

2 teaspoons dried crushed


2 teaspoons dried crushed oregano

2 teaspoons dried crushed thyme

3 bay


1 tablespoon salt-free, garlic-free poultry seasoning (or 1 teaspoon dried sage, 1 teaspoon

marjoram, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger and 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg)

1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus

more to taste

1 tablespoon pepper.

1. Split the bread loaf in half and soak it in a large

bowl of cold water for 15 minutes. Wring out excess water over a colander and shred into pieces.


Boil the livers or hearts for 8 minutes in salted water, then chop until no piece is larger than a coffee bean.

3. In a skillet over medium-high heat, brown the ground beef in the oil, stirring occasionally and

breaking up the meat, so no piece is larger than a pistachio.

4. In your largest mixing bowl, combine

the sourdough, livers, ground beef, celery, onion, parsley, eggs, raisins, Parmesan and nuts, tossing gently with

your hands to combine. Whisk the rosemary, oregano, thyme, bay leaves, poultry seasoning, salt and pepper together

in a bowl, scatter over the stuffing and toss again with your hands. Taste and adjust for salt. Refrigerate,

covered, until ready to use as a stuffing or to bake separately as dressing.

Yield: 20 cups, enough for

one large turkey, 2 to 3 geese or 8 chickens.








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